That's the theme of a 4000 word essay that I'm working at the moment. Here are some summary thoughts on what I'm reading and writing about.
It seems that there are lots of reasons why a knowledge of Mathematics is useful, but there are other schools of thoughts which say that these reasons are now outdated in the 21st century. For example, Maths was needed to create IT but to use IT no longer needs a knowledge of Maths.
There are even less convincing arguments that Maths should be compulsory up until GCSE. One argument for Maths is that it has an enjoyable beauty, but this then places it on a level with Music, which is optional at GCSE.
I think I actually think that it would be a good thing, for the good of the subject, for it to be made optional at GCSE. I think.
But hey, let's see whether I can argue that in my essay. Also what do you think? Any useful comments might get quoted in my essay!! ooh.